Lesbian foster parents: Judge Lesbian Couple Foster Child
Published: November 13, 2015
Lesbian foster parents: Judge Lesbian Couple Foster Child, State officials are challenging a Utah judge’s order to remove a child from her lesbian foster parents. Earlier this week the Juvenile court judge ruled that the baby should instead be cared for by a heterosexual couple.
Judge Scott Johansen gave the Utah Division of Child and Family Services one week-by Nov. 17- to remove the child from her foster parents, but the agency said in a press release Thursday it plans to challenge the order in appeals court if Johansen doesn’t rescind his decision, according to the Associated Press.
The Division of Child and Family Services statement on the Utah lesbian couple fighting to keep foster child: pic.twitter.com/RgRC2Zi4Wp
– Olivia Niland (@OliviaNiland) November 13, 2015
The foster parents, April Hoagland and Beckie Peirce, have been fighting to keep the child since the decision. The married couple had been raising their foster daughter for three months and were asked by the nine-month-old girl’s biological mother to legally adopt her when Johansen made the order during a routine hearing Tuesday.
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“It’s not fair and it’s not right, and it hurts me really badly because I haven’t done anything wrong,” Hoagland told Salt Lake City’s KUTV.
After news of the case spread, Utah Governor Gary Herbert said Thursday he was “puzzled” by Johansen’s order, Salt Lake City’s FOX 13 reported.
“We don’t want to have activism on the bench in any way, shape or form,” Herbert said. “Laws, sometimes people don’t like, but the judge should not interject his own personal beliefs and feelings and supersede the law.”
Johansen is prohibited from commenting on the pending case, Utah courts spokeswoman Nancy Volmer told the AP, but Hoagland and Peirce told KUTV the judge cited research supposedly showing that children raised by same-sex parents are negatively affected.
“He said he has research to back that children do better in heterosexual homes,” Hoagland told the Salt Lake City Tribune.
But he didn’t provide specifics of the research in court when asked by state attorneys representing the child, Hoagland and Peirce said, according to the Salt Lake City Tribune. The couple said they think he acted on his own religious beliefs.
“He’s never been in our home, never spent time with the child in our home or our other children so he doesn’t know anything about this,” Peirce, who is raising her two older children with Hoagland, told KUTV.
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